What is the focus of the long-term management of patients with atrial fibrillation (Afib)(AF)?

Updated: Nov 18, 2019
  • Author: Lawrence Rosenthal, MD, PhD, FACC, FHRS; Chief Editor: Jeffrey N Rottman, MD  more...
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Long-term management of atrial fibrillation (AF) is focused on reducing the likelihood of AF recurrence, reducing AF-related symptoms, control of ventricular rate, and reducing stroke risk. As discussed previously, AF is often the result of established cardiovascular risk factors. Appropriate management of these risk factors will reduce the likelihood of future episodes of AF and AF-related morbidity and mortality. Anticoagulation with either aspirin or warfarin should be initiated for all individuals with AF, except in those with contraindications. Selection of the appropriate antithrombotic regimen for a given patient should be balanced between the risk of stroke and the risk of bleeding. Antiarrhythmic therapy can aid in maintenance of sinus rhythm in certain patients but requires close monitoring.

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